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info on dog attacks

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Why don't you give your opinion along with posting such a link.

I mean even I in Iceland have read the news about this tragic incident so I would assume anyone with a slight interest in dogs already knows about this in the US.

So what do you want to tell us? Do you agree with opinions put forward in this article?

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Dear Mr. Smalahundur,

 

Although these attacks are frequently reported this is the first time I've seen any hypothesis why one might have happened and the explanations offered are, I think, pretty good.

 

Doald

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Yeah, well, the article doesn't really say a lot. I think the fear hypothesis is very unlikely, predatory drift is also something I would put some big questionmarks on ( confusing your owner with prey ?).

 

Those breeds have origines in fighting pits. They have been selected over generations for dog- dog aggression. That has big consequences for the genetic code thet rules this kind of behavior. The article handles this case as if it was about your average family pet. These dogs weren't.

 

Yes, no doubt there has been some kind of trigger that has set of these dogs, but that would not have triggered a pooble or a labrador, certainly not in a killing frenzy. Dogs are not created equal.

No word of thát in this article.

 

Knowing what kind of trigger set this off won't prevent this from happening again, because I have no doubt it was something trivial. Recognizing these dogs for what they are, i.e not your average pet as some afficinado's would like you to believe, would be way more important.

They have inbred behavioral risks, and they attract a certain type of owner. (The victim certainly fits the profile).

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These dogs were about 100# each according to reports. Im wondering if they were more Presa or Cane Corso than Pit Bull mix.

 

And honestly, if two of them got in a tiff and she tried to separate them then I could easily see them redirecting on her. And dog who is worked up enough will redirect in a fight or pain but the big tough ones are the ones who can really do harm. I know someone with Presas and and one of her males decided he didnt like her maturing male Labrador. Came through a glass window after him. She rehomed him. I would have euthanized after that.

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Dear Doggers,

I havent anything to add to the. Pit bull argumjent but I am interested in predatory drift which is quite real despite our sentamentalized view of our dogs. In wolves its called mobbing and if youve been amidst a multi dog dog fight youve likely seen it. Revved to the max, blood flowing, they arent tame animals anymore,

Donald

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It could be that I don't understand the exact meaning of the term "predatory drift" well enough. I'll look into it.

Btw, my view of dogs is not that sentimental ;)

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I was at a disc dog event once when a spectator came by to watch with her very large Presa (or similar breed). I felt totally unnerved by the way this dog, that greatly outweighed his very slight owner, was keenly watching the disc dogs, most of whom were in a state of great excitement. The dog was intently watching with a stare that simple frightened me. I took my two dogs away and out of the dog's sight. The owner and her dog moved on but I certainly was ill at ease. I expect I'm prejudiced but that dog's body language (stiff, still, intent) did not make me comfortable.

 

People are always ready to say that if a pet is descended from a certain type (herding, bird, etc.) that it is going to retain certain characteristics. Even if they lose a lot of those due to not being selected for them, they may retain some. Why isn't that the case for this type of dog?

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Dear. Doggers,

I was at a pet dog trainers conference with with Luke and June, off lead unlike most of the hundred or so other dogs. June was a predator and had killed moles and woodchucks. Shed never been around teeny-tiny dogs and didnt know what to make of them. That afternoon the toy booths opened and dog toys emitted their distress cries. June had never had, never seen, one of those toys and she alerted, full.

 

Despite the confusion and novelty June might not have grabbed one of those teeny-tinys Ill never know because I put my mannerly open trial dog on a leash.

Donals

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Animal aggression and human aggression are not the same; it is very obvious in our Kangal.

 

Like any working breed, if you do not evaluate for the function you have no idea how balanced the instincts are for that function and you dont know what genetic defects are being passed on.

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One evening my normally mild mannered and congenial pack of four began barking at something very exciting going on in my neighbor's yard - their dog chasing a cat perhaps. This went on for maybe 30 seconds and then there was a very abrupt shift in the tone of the racket, from four dogs yelling "hey, wow, look at that!" to four dogs snarling "oh yeah, well so's your mother!" and rearing up and shoving and rolling and grabbing mouthfuls of fur of whichever dog they could. No blood flying or puncture wounds (yet), and it took the extreme measure of me yelling out the window "hey, knock it off knuckleheads!" to restore order, and within seconds everyone was as calm and nonchalant as if nothing had happened. So, I'm not sure that what I witnessed really qualifies as full blown predatory drift, but all four dogs had definitely redirected their excitement over whatever was happening in the yard next door into aggression toward each other.

 

That incident is what I thought of when I read the original story of the mauling described in this follow-up article. It was easy for me to break through my dogs' flare up because a) I caught it before it had escalated too far, B) my dogs all had experience in other contexts with "knock it off knucklehead" meaning nothing good was going to happen if they did not get their impulses under control right quick, c) my dogs really really don't like fighting anyway, and d) I was lucky. But get a couple powerful, just-emerging-from-adolescence dogs who have likely inherited some jumbled mix of genes related to liking to fight and not ever ever ever giving up once a fight is engaged pushed over the brink, and it may not be so easy to pull them back to civilization before they've inflicted dire damage.

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I don't think there are very many dog people who would suggest that animal aggression and human aggression are the same. However, I think it's possible that in selecting for dog-dog aggression you might get some crossover. As much as people like to parrot the idea that game dog men selected against human aggression by culling, if you actually look at the history of dog fighting you'll find this is simply not true (https://responsiblepitbulladvocates.tumblr.com/post/156818932185/misrepresentation-is-a-killer-information).

 

Displacement aggression from dog-dog to dog-human is not uncommon, and a good number of these attacks on humans begin as an attack on a dog whose human refuses to stand by and watch their dog be eviscerated.

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Flaws in the argument are few of these dogs (ones in pet homes) were bred for the original purpose and few were ever tested in a way to know how they would respond to stimuli that would trigger their instincts.

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It could be that I don't understand the exact meaning of the term "predatory drift" well enough. I'll look into it.

Btw, my view of dogs is not that sentimental ;)

Smalahundur,

Your post made me realize that I didn't exactly understand the term "predatory drift" either. Enter Mr. Google.

 

FWIW, I came across this article. I am not presenting it as the defining essay on the topic, but I thought it was interesting and made some good points. I am going to have to re-read it several times to truly understand.

 

https://jamescraigha.wordpress.com/2015/02/12/predatory-drift-revisited/

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^ From this article:

 

So predatory drift is a created term used by non-animal behaviorists to dump a bunch of actual true mechanisms into one category and give it a single but ill-defined name.

But wasn't the concept of predatory drift first proposed by Dr. Ian Dunbar, a veterinary behaviorist?

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^ From this article:

 

So predatory drift is a created term used by non-animal behaviorists to dump a bunch of actual true mechanisms into one category and give it a single but ill-defined name.

But wasn't the concept of predatory drift first proposed by Dr. Ian Dunbar, a veterinary behaviorist?

Academic infighting? ;)

 

Yeah, I thought that was interesting.

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I wonder if there are couple points worth mentioning in all this.

One, we must not discount the drastic changes in the dogs' lifestyle. Apparently they went from beloved indoor pets to kennel dogs kept outside in all weather, fed only every other day or so, and lacking any but intermittent contact with their owner.
Two, various accounts say she got one of the dogs, (they were litter mates) from "an abusive home." We are not told at what age she got the dog, whether also as a puppy or as a young adult. But an abusive home could leave a dog with different triggers than normal.

So, we have two very large dogs who've gone from house pets and companion dogs to isolated, physically uncomfortable, half-starved animals who get only intermittent quality interaction. Already their mindset is going to be different. Then one day these neglected dogs go out on a walk with their human. We probably have a heightened state of arousal and excitement from the moment she let them out of that kennel. Include in that mix a dog that came from an "abusive home" - what triggers might he have? Did they get in an over-excited scrap, like Hooper2 describes? Did she do something that triggered a response that horribly went from play to prey?

We'll never know what the trigger was, but I don't think we can view this as just two pet dogs who inexplicably went rogue. I think the dogs' neglectful situation has to be factored into this and possibly the fact that one of the dogs had once been abused. The whole thing is a million kinds of awful. :(

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I wonder if there are couple points worth mentioning in all this.

 

One, we must not discount the drastic changes in the dogs' lifestyle. Apparently they went from beloved indoor pets to kennel dogs kept outside in all weather, fed only every other day or so, and lacking any but intermittent contact with their owner.

Two, various accounts say she got one of the dogs, (they were litter mates) from "an abusive home." We are not told at what age she got the dog, whether also as a puppy or as a young adult. But an abusive home could leave a dog with different triggers than normal.

 

So, we have two very large dogs who've gone from house pets and companion dogs to isolated, physically uncomfortable, half-starved animals who get only intermittent quality interaction. Already their mindset is going to be different. Then one day these neglected dogs go out on a walk with their human. We probably have a heightened state of arousal and excitement from the moment she let them out of that kennel. Include in that mix a dog that came from an "abusive home" - what triggers might he have? Did they get in an over-excited scrap, like Hooper2 describes? Did she do something that triggered a response that horribly went from play to prey?

 

We'll never know what the trigger was, but I don't think we can view this as just two pet dogs who inexplicably went rogue. I think the dogs' neglectful situation has to be factored into this and possibly the fact that one of the dogs had once been abused. The whole thing is a million kinds of awful. :(

 

This.

 

And one of my big speculations was finding something food-like or food out in the woods (Poop, dead animal, whatever). Even not normally food aggressive dogs will become so if they're REALLY hungry or have become insecure about food. Did they fight with each other about it and try to break it up? Or get them off that bit of food?

 

All of it's speculation but there is a lot going on here that goes well beyond normal in both circumstance and the dogs themselves and it's not breed type. Since, you know, they're 100lbs and pits just aren't 100lb dogs.

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...there is a lot going on here that goes well beyond normal in both circumstance and the dogs themselves and it's not breed type.

 

Maybe it's a little of both. Just sayin' . . .

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The AKC breed standard is 67 lbs max for American Staffordshire Terriers and the UKC standard for American Pit bull Terriers is 60 lbs. I live in the south and am somewhat familiar with "game bred" (fighting) APBT--they are medium size wiry dogs that many, who are not familiar with the breed, would confuse as mutts. Think about it--will a muscle bound, blocky 100 lb dog have the stamina to fight on a hot and humid evening in the deep south? Of course not.

 

The original fighting dogs were bred for considerable bite inhibition around people--how else could a human handle such a dog in the fighting ring?

 

These 100 lb dogs are mixes that are likely being mixed with breeds that lack bite inhibition and this has the potential to create a dangerous dog.

 

I think that of a lot of these pit bull type dogs are crossbreds containing mastiff, Rottie, American Bull dogs, and things like Dogo argentinos, Presas, etc

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The original fighting dogs were bred for considerable bite inhibition around people--how else could a human handle such a dog in the fighting ring?

 

I'm guessing you didn't read the link Terrecar posted in msg. #12. It would seem to belie that belief.

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A few points:

 

There is a video floating around on the pit bull forums that shows a dog in a fighting ring immediately before a dog fight. The leash? Something very similar to a catch pole. Thats how a human might handle such a dog in a fighting ring.

 

A dog that shows bite inhibition toward its handler might still bite other humans at a higher bite level. Influential pit bull brood bitch Ch. Crenshaws Honeybunch grabbed hold of a dog fighting judges hand and would not let go. Im guessing that judge wasnt impressed with the bitchs bite inhibition.

 

Famous game dog man John Colbys nephew was killed by one of his fighting dogs. I have his son Josephs book and cannot find any mention of the attack. It was, however, reported in the Boston Daily Globe on Feb 3, 1909, along with the observation that Colby was secretive about the attack.

 

I am not from the south, but I have a cousin who is. He breeds APBTs and offered me a puppy that caught my eye. I thought it wise to actually do some unbiased research into the breed, beginning with a book written in the 1930s before pit bull advocacy went on steroids (Colbys book). I decided against taking the pup. As much as I loved my fox terriers, I would rather not keep breeds with an arguably-or-not higher than average tendency toward dog-dog aggression.

 

The now extinct Cordoba Fighting Dog and the Dogo Argentino (derived from the former) have both been historically used in dog fighting. These are large, muscular dogs. I imagine it gets rather hot in Argentina...

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My question about the info in the link posted by terrecar is if the dogs listed are examples of the norm or examples of temperamentaly unstable dogs that owners put up with because they won with these dogs. Keeping and breeding temperamentaly unstable dogs that win is not unheard of in any dog sport; but are these dogs representative of the breed norm.

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